A man who was caught on CCTV footage kissing flight attendant Christine Dacera hours before she was found dead in a hotel bathtub on New Year’s Day has explained his side of the story.

Eleven men have been provisionally charged in relation to the rape and murder of Ms Dacera, 23, who was found dead after celebrating the new year at the Garden City Grand Hotel in Makati, Philippines.

Valentine Rosales, 23, who is accused of being involved in young flight attendant’s death, said he was the man seen kissing her in the hotel footage, Philippines news outlet GMA News Online reports.

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The footage, which was released last week, shows the pair scurrying down the hallway, knocking on the door of a hotel room and kissing.

But Mr Rosales said Ms Dacera initiated the kiss and an extended version of the footage shows him gently pushing her away.

“I was trying to open the door. I rang the doorbell. She was the one who grabbed me,” he said.

“I rang the doorbell but I dodged, I sidestepped her.”

Another friend of Ms Dacera who was also at the New Year’s Eve party told GMA News Online it wasn’t unusual for the young woman to kiss friends while drinking.

Three of the 11 men charged in relation to Ms Dacera’s death have been arrested but released from police custody.

The Makati City Prosecutor’s Office said “the pieces of evidence so far submitted are insufficient to establish that (Ms Dacera) was sexually assaulted or raped”.

Ms Dacera, a communications graduate and PAL Express crew member, was laid to rest in her home city of General Santos on Saturday.

The 23-year-old was found unconscious in a bathtub in the hotel on January 1.

Friends performed CPR but she failed to respond and was declared dead on arrival at Makati hospital.

Police said “lacerations and sperm” were found on her genitalia and body was covered in scratches and bruises.

An autopsy found Ms Dacera’s death was caused by a ruptured aortic aneurysm. But Ms Dacera’s family is pushing for a second autopsy after claiming the first one was incomplete, ABS-CBN reported.

A lawyer for Ms Dacera’s family said they believed the young woman was drugged and abused before her death.

They claimed Ms Dacera “had already experienced intoxication and complained that her drinks appeared to have been spiked” during the New Year’s celebrations.

“We also believe that maybe the aneurysm was a proximate cause but it is also very possible it was triggered by the assault prior to her death,” the family’s lawyer, Brick Reyes, said, according to The Inquirer.

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